Vine has launched its own video messaging system today, which offers users a way to communicate beyond the comments that appear beneath videos. Employee Jason Mante teased the feature in a Vine earlier today, and now the update for Vine's mobile apps has arrived. Vine says it's the most significant update since the app launched early last year. Vine messages, or VMs as Vine calls them, can be sent to anyone — they're not just limited to existing Vine members. VMs to people not using Vine are sent via SMS and email. Vine messages are one-on-one, but you can send a VM to multiple people "to start several separate conversations at once," Vine says. Aside from exchanging videos privately, Vine messages also let you send traditional text messages to friends.
Vine may also be planning another big addition: the ability to import video from your smartphone's camera roll. Ever since the app launched, it's held true to the rule that videos must be created within Vine; uploading existing clips has never been permitted. But that may be changing soon. A Vine from user MarksBasementRecords (since deleted) reveals a new "upload" option that allows previously recorded videos to be imported into Vine. Such a change would be a major shift away from the "record it on the fly" approach, but it would also lend Vine's community a new level of creative freedom. Instagram has allowed camera role imports since August, but Vine has so far refused to include the feature. This could easily be a limited beta test however, so there's no guarantee video importing will arrive soon.